We’re well into the Christmas season. Christmas songs are playing in the shops and on the radio….’I wish it could be Christmas every day…’
My default position is ‘Bah Humbug’. The picture of ho-ho-happiness is too much for me! When family members ask me what I want for Christmas my answer is ‘peace and quiet’. It’s a family joke. A Christmas tradition.
Kate loves Christmas. Kate and her family will get home from work and change into Christmas pyjamas. They’ve already put up their (extensive) Christmas decorations. They’ll watch a Christmas film, play Christmas games, and go to bed – in their Christmas sheets and duvet.
Kate wishes it could be Christmas every day. For her it will be for the next month.
For some folk Christmas is the last thing on their mind. In the news these last few days has been the horrific story of 6-year-old Arthur Labinjo-Hughes, starved and killed by his dad and stepmother.
For some friends Christmas will be a time of sickness, bereavement, family-stress, anxiety, aloneness… Christmas every day?
Christmas… celebrating the birth of Jesus… there is the coming of light, hope and joy and the gift of a baby… but also a single mother giving birth in an animal shed far from home, a mass slaughter of baby boys and refugees fleeing for their lives.
Jesus was accused of being a drunkard and a glutton; his first miracle was to keep the wine flowing at a party. He knew how to have a good time. And yet he was a ‘man of sorrows, acquainted with grief’, sharing the suffering of others, enduring his own pain.
Somehow in Christmas pleasure and pain, feasting and fasting, hope and hurt come together…
If the Christmas that includes donkeys, shepherds and a baby also includes difficulties, light, sadness and hope that reflects the honest complexity of life then perhaps this year for the first time I wish it could be Christmas every day.